Sunday, March 12, 2017

Blue sky, yellow kite by Janet A Holmes and Jonathan Bentley

Walking along the beach the other day I saw a family flying kites.  I stood still and watched the group for a long time.  There was a strong breeze but even the youngest child kept his kite in the air. Flying kites to me represents happiness and freedom.  It is an activity we want to share with others. Those brightly coloured scraps of paper or silk soaring high connected only by a string or two continue to fascinate us.

Take a close look at the way the title of this book Blue Sky Yellow Kite is presented.  Sky and Kite are in flowing italics just like swooping kites.  You can also see just how windy it is by the way Daisy's hair is billowing behind her.

Daisy sees a kite.  She runs towards it.  William is flying the kite.  He shows Daisy how to control the kite but ...

Daisy runs with the kite ...
She does not look back once ...

Having the kite all to herself does not give her happiness.  She hides the kite and she can't sleep. Finally Daisy returns the kite and draws the word sorry on the path to William's house.  This is the turning point in the story. William could keep his kite and never see Daisy again but Janet A Holmes let's us see a different possibility - forgiveness.  William brings a box over to Daisy and it is filled with fresh kite making materials.  Now they can fly a pair of yellow and red kites together.

I would pair this book with Miss Lily's fabulous Pink Feather Boa.  I mentioned the CBCA notables list last week.  Blue Sky Yellow Kite has made the Notable Picture book of the Year list. This book does deal with some big emotional issues of guilt and forgiveness but I wonder if it might be better on the Early Childhood list.  I would share this book with children in Years 1 and 2.

If you want to read more picture books about kite flying I suggest The Sea-Breeze hotel and The tiny Kite of Eddie Wing.  Here is an activity where you can make the kites for yourself and here is lesson you could use with a preschool or Kindergarten group.

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